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Effective international engagement is built on excellent diplomacy. Our master's degree in Diplomacy and International Relations will prepare you for a career on the frontline of global affairs.

  • Located near international organisations, embassies and think tanks in the capital.
  • You will be taught by academics with hands-on experience of diplomacy and international affairs.

Why study Diplomacy and International Relations?

Diplomacy has traditionally been understood as the way in which officials pursue their country’s foreign policy. However, in the contemporary fast-changing world in which the current international rulebook and institutions are under intense pressure, diplomacy has come to have a far broader application.

Officials working for the United Nations and other international bodies, such as the European Union, conduct diplomacy. So too do staff at major non-governmental bodies and charities, and unconventional forms of diplomacy by groups such as Independent Diplomat are on the rise. Even businesses now use diplomacy to advance their goals on the international stage.

As well as learning about diplomatic history and theory, you will also develop practical diplomatic skills, such as preparing briefing papers, policy documents and speeches. This will be complemented with the intellectual rigour associated with a study of International Relations, and its different tools for understanding the changing world of international affairs.

You will also have the chance to interact with senior diplomats and benefit from the excellent range of diplomatic missions and international organisations located in the British capital.

Why St Mary's?

This postgraduate degree builds on our proven expertise in the fields of diplomacy and international relations.

Prof John Charmley is one of Britain’s leading diplomatic historians and has written extensively on Churchill and the End of Empire. Prof Glenn Richardson is an authority on England’s relations with Europe in the Tudor period and Dr Claire Norton has written on Ottoman diplomacy.

The course is designed and delivered by senior figures with hands-on experience of diplomacy at the very highest levels. Prof Francis Campbell, Vice-Chancellor of St Mary’s University, served as policy advisor and private secretary to the Prime Minister, and has worked as an ambassador and head of the policy unit at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Visiting professors include Sir Ivor Roberts and Ambassador Noel Fahey. Sir Ivor Roberts served as British Ambassador to Italy, Yugoslavia and Ireland and is also the editor of recent editions of Satow’s Diplomatic Practice (widely regarded as the most authoritative diplomatic handbook). Ambassador Noel Fahey served as Ireland’s ambassador to Germany, the United States and the Holy See.

The course also includes contributions from other senior diplomats and figures from the worlds of foreign policy and international politics.

Entry requirements

2:2 Previous degree

The expected entry requirement for the programme is a 2:2 undergraduate degree in any subject.

Additional requirement information

Applicants without a degree, but with relevant work experience, for example as a government official or an employee in an international organisation, or applicants with other relevant work experience, such as journalism or in NGOs, will also be considered.

International requirements

International students should check our country-specific pages for equivalents. If English is not your first language you will need to achieve an IELTS score of 6.5 overall with no less than 6.0 in any section (or equivalent).

We now accept IELTS Indicator test results as proof of your English language level.

Further information

For more information about entry requirements please email apply@stmarys.ac.uk.

Course content

Modules

  • History, Theory, and Practice of Diplomacy Core
  • International Relations Theory Core
  • Human Rights and Migration Core
  • Security Studies Core
  • Global Governance Core
  • Researching Diplomacy, International Relations, and Development Management Techniques Core
  • Dissertation Core Option
  • Dissertation with Professional Connection Core Option

Please note: it is possible that a module listed on the website will not be able to run due to reasons beyond our control. For more information please refer to our course information disclaimer.

Career opportunities

Diplomacy and International Relations has been designed to prepare you for a career in diplomacy and other associated roles within international affairs, whether working for a national foreign ministry, an international organisation, an NGO, or any other body or organisation that works globally.

The Careers Service has more information on graduate careers and part-time work available during your course.

How the degree is taught

Teaching methods

You'll be taught on our beautiful and historic campus located in Twickenham, London.

Teaching is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars and workshops.

The taught programme runs over two semesters full time (September until May).

Assessment methods

Assessment is based on written coursework and includes assignments specifically designed to build key analytical and communication skills. These include preparing policy briefings, engaging with the media and delivering presentations and speeches.

Your dissertation or professional practice is an independent project that you will complete between June and September.

Qualifications available

The course has three possible exit points:

  • Postgraduate Certificate: successful completion of 60 credits
  • Postgraduate Diploma: successful completion of 120 credits without a dissertation
  • Master's: successful completion of 120 credits plus a 15,000-word dissertation or professional practice report

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

September 2021

  • Home: £8,100
  • International: £13,950

Part-time fees

Part-time students will be charged for the modules undertaken per academic year. Module prices are calculated as a percentage of credits against the total credits and cost of the degree.

Tuition fees are subject to an inflationary increase each year, meaning if your course runs over more than one academic year you may pay an increased fee per module for each subsequent year of study. Tuition fee increases for returning students will be capped at the higher of 5% per annum or the rate of Consumer Price Index inflation in the United Kingdom.

Funding

Government-funded loans of over £11,000 are available to many UK/EU postgraduate students.

For guidance about financing your studies, including information about the government-funded loans, please check out Fees & Funding section.

International Students should check their eligibility for our International Scholarship.

Alumni discount

A 20% tuition fee discount is available for our alumni (undergraduate and PGCE) planning to study this Master's degree. Those studying for a PGDip of PGCert are not eligible for the discount.

Additional costs

Your tuition fees will cover the cost of all mandatory elements of your programme.

Additional costs could be incurred depending on optional modules chosen and other projects undertaken For further information about additional costs please contact christopher.wylde@stmarys.ac.uk.

Facilities

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Further information